Re: Authsort using $FROMADDRNAME$

2002-09-03 00:34:09
On September 3, 2002 at 00:07, Stephanie Smith wrote:

I've got a fairly large social mail list which I maintain the online
archive for, and for which I have just set up an author index. The
problem is that while people on this list maintain their same email
address, its not uncommon for someone to change the $FROMNAME$ every so
often. Which makes the usefulness of the author index somewhat questionable.
What I would like is to be able to do an AUTHSORT based on $FROMADDRNAME$
rather than $FROMNAME$. Is this doable?

Not without code changes.

It seems like it *should* be, and

It is technically doable, but would require code changes if you
want the solution to be implemented withing MHonArc.

yet I've gone over the docs a number of times now, to no avail. The
details of AUTHSORT appear to be tucked into the innermore workings, which
I am hesitant to go poking about (at least without a minimum of guidance

Sorting is done by the sort_messages() routine in
To implement what you want is a little complicated to get the desired
effect an end user would want.  For example, say you sort by mail
address.  Now how to you display the out to the author index page?
Do you output sorted by mail address, causing the human names to
apparently appear in no reasonable order?  Or do you just list email
addresses, and people must go by that.

In sum, what you want the final results to look like?

Any suggestions would be much appreciated,

IMHO, author indexes have some uses, but I think a browsable one
is not very useful due to the technical problems in generating one.

The solution I recommend is the one implemented at the
mail archives, <>.  If you
look at a message page, you will see a,

  from [$FROMNAME$]

link below the subject header.  If you click the link, it executes
a author search via the search engine and displays all the messages
sent from the same address as the current message.  The search is
actually done against the email address, so if the $FROMNAME$ differs
in other messages, those messages will still show up in the results.

The search engine, Namazu, supports field based queries for mail,
so I use it as my solution to the problem.

This solution does lack the ability to browse through authors, but
it does provide a user to jump to all messages for an author; which
I believe is probably the more common use case for listing messages
for a given author.

A limitation of the solution is if you have the same person, but
different mail addresses.  A possible fix is to have the link execute
an OR search on the $FROMNAME$ and $FROMADDR$, but this may lead
to bogus hits.

Note, users can still do generic author searches via the search


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